Can you tell us about your mix tape On My Way?
On My Way is my first solo project. After releasing it seven months ago I’ve had the pleasure to perform it a few times namely twice at the Montreal Jazz Festival. It’s a collection of songs that shaped the period I was in while making the project. Sonically it covers a few influences that shape my sound. It’s available on iTunes, Bandcamp, Soundcloud or my website.
Tell us about Nomadic Massive. What are they all about? How did you connect with them?
Nomadic Massive is a live hip-hop band with world music tendencies! We are four to five on the mic in five languages. The sound is a fusion of hip-hop, Afrobeat and Jazz. I was 18 when I met them and was connected to them through a friend who told they may be needing a singer soon. I went to a rehearsal and started jamming with them, after a few shows I asked if I can become a member, the rest is history!
Tell us about Rap N’ Roll
Rap N’ Roll is the latest video we dropped, the single is from our last album Big Band Theory. We had a lot of fun making the video, especially because it reflects many of our current realities. We all have side hustles and keep managing to push the music. The beat is a strong rock guitar sample with heavy hip-hop drums, produced by Waahli from the band.
How did you develop your rapping technique?
It was with my first crew that I tapped into rapping for a posse track that demanded even singers to rap. I really liked it and felt I had something to explore there. It wasn’t until I went Brazil and lost my voice in 2008 that I resorted to rapping and took it more seriously after. The original crew I was with Royal Peasants were my main reference when it came to technique and my knowledge of the culture. Afterwards it was by working with Nomadic Massive and discovering the difference between studio and live performance that I developed my own techniques along the way.
You’ve said before that music saved your life. Can you elaborate on that?
Music has been a stellar companion and teacher in my life. A therapy and a motivation, a challenge and a blessing. It paved my way up until now on this very exchange with The Arab Edition. When we came as refugees to Canada, we had to go through a trial to know if we will be accepted or deported. When it wasn’t looking good with the prosecutor and the required proofs to help our case, I asked to speak and in my speech, I asked if I could sing… which I did. The rest is history and here we are citizens today.
Do you think music can change the world?
Absolutely. I strongly believe in energy and the power of music is universal and undeniable. It’s one of the strongest tools we have to connect, convey a message and elevate together. We can heal, teach and unite through music. Music is my form of expression, it’s personal and real. There are many messages that I would like to communicate through my music. I’m hoping people are moved. One thing is for sure, authenticity, love and gratitude tend to be common denominators in my music.